Couple of rookie RV folk questions

My wife and I recently bought a fixer-upper style 1984 32-foot Fleetwood Southwind with a 454. We're new to the whole RV thing, but like the idea of self-contained and self-reliant traveling. We went with the older model first to cut the initial cost and second because I figured bringing the different systems up to speed would help me understand better how they worked and coordinated with each other.
I have two areas I'm currently seeking information on if anyone out there has it to share.
The previous owner(s) didn't take good care of the roof and several leaks and cracks developed. I'm taking care of patching the roof, but does anyone have a good strategy for dealing with dry rotted, and in some cases, still-wet ceilings in an RV?
Secondly, none of the seats in the coach were apparently ever fitted with seatbelts, or if they were, the seats were changed out. Any thoughts on the best place to anchor aftermarket seatbelts?

Thanks for any help y'all can offer.
Couple of rookie RV folk questions

Well on the repairing of the roof, camper world has some ruberized tape that makes a permanent repair. As to the dry rotted ceilings, this is probably wet rot that has dried out and as far as the wet ceilings fix the leaks. The ceilings can be repaired with a little tender loving care. whar type of material is the ceilings made of.
Couple of rookie RV folk questions

Darn forgot :laugh: , the seat belts, should be attached to any solid structural member. The older motor homes were exempt from them but they are nice to have. Normally drill through the floor and use a large washer on the bottom side :approve: . Most floors are made from 3/4" plywood and if there is enough strain to pull a large washer through the plywood, you are in a world of hurt anyway :blackeye: .
Couple of rookie RV folk questions

Thanks bunches for the responses, Poppa and sp.

Poppa, the ceiling looks to be 3/4" plywood that has gotten crunchy in the front of the coach and a mix of soggy and crunchy spots in the rear. At this point, I'm not sweating the appearance so much as the structural soundness. I want to feel sure that a weak ceiling won't lead to problems such as one of the air conditioners falling through the roof, or me doing the same trying to patch and seal.

Appreciate the advice on the seatbelt anchoring, I'll be putting that to use directly.

Sp, thanks for the links, lots of good stuff there.

C Nash

Senior Member
Couple of rookie RV folk questions

If installing the seatbelts anchor through the floor I would use a piece of 1/4 inch flat iron about a foot long on the underside.


Senior Member
Couple of rookie RV folk questions

I would remove the ceiling and take a close look at the framing that supports the roof. The support structure is most likely of wood and it could very well be rotted. If it is you could very well have either of the unpleasant events that you suggest. It would be very wise to replace any rotted wood in the support structure. Even the newer motorhomes have wood framing around the vents and openings for things like the air conditioners. It could be rotted as it seems as though yours has leaked for some time.